Volunteer News February 2014

Our new space is such a great location for us. It’s a pleasure to conduct our business here and already I am noticing more walk-in traffic. Our support groups seem to be happy with the meeting space and we will soon conduct our first volunteer training here.

The Better at Home program that we are collaborating with is slowly getting up and running. My hope is that Susan, the Program Coordinator, will be able to speak to us about the program at our first meeting in April. By then, more of the program particulars will have been worked out and she will have specific information to share.

Since the last newsletter we have worked on the revision and updating of some of our forms. Our Intake Coordinators met and reviewed how intakes are conducted and how we might improve this. We basically happy with how the team is operating and how immediately responsive we are able to be. There remains no wait list for peer counselling apart from the time it takes to do an intake assessment and assign a peer counsellor.

We plan to host a third caregiver’s support group for women as soon as we have a couple of more participants. If you know of someone who might benefit from the support of others who are in a similar situation, please encourage them to call the office to get information.

The bowling program has two new bowlers with room for four more. This is a wonderful program facilitated by some very generous caregivers. As mentioned in the January newsletter, if you know of someone who would benefit from this program, encourage them to call. The program runs each Tuesday at 1:15 at Codes Country Lanes opposite the Courtenay Library.

Our next Volunteer Training will begin on Thursday, February 20th.  The training will encompass five Thursdays, concluding on March 20th. If you know of someone who may be interested, please encourage them to call for more information. If you would like a refresher yourself, you are welcome to take the training but please commit to participating in all five sessions. Training will run from 9:30 to 3:00 on each of the five days.

There are two upcoming workshops that will take place on Monday, February 17 in Courtenay that may be of interest to you or someone you know. They are sponsored by the BC Centre for Elder Advocacy and Support. The workshops continue the theme of the financial abuse/exploitation of the elderly that was begun in the fall. The first workshop is for the general public. The second workshop is for those who would like to learn how to deliver the first workshop.

Monday,  February 17th, 10:00-11:30AM: Native Sons Hall – Lodge Room

360 Cliffe Avenue, Courtenay

This session will be for the general public, including older adults

Topic: Powers of Attorney, Joint Bank Accounts and Representation Agreements (focus on advance care planning & how to deal with financial abuse/exploitation)

Monday, February 17th, 1:00-3:00 PM, Filberg Centre – Soroptimist Lounge

411 Anderton Ave, Courtenay

This session will be for service providers who wish to be trained to deliver the workshop

Topic: Powers of Attorney, Joint Bank Accounts and Representation Agreements (focus on advance care planning & how to deal with financial abuse/exploitation)

The workshops are free but you must pre-register by Thursday, Feb. 13th: 1-888-1927, extension 225. This is a Vancouver toll free number so be sure to tell them right away what workshop, and where it is, that you want to register for.

We enjoyed a talk on January 28th given by Liz Friis, Recreation Director, Glacier View Lodge. Liz is knowledgeable and engaging and very good at helping people develop bigger perspectives on Alzheimer’s disease, and other dementias, including how to support someone afflicted with the disease.

On Tuesday, February 25th, Wendy Johnstone from Keystone Eldercare will speak to us about how to support someone who has had a stroke. Let’s plan for a good turnout to honour her time with us. On Tuesday, March 25th, Jane Hope from the Alzheimer’s Society will be our guest speaker. I am working on getting a specific speaker from the Hospice Society to talk to us at our late April meeting on how to think about and deal with the death, or impending death, of a client. Losing a client can be a hard thing to experience and process. The speaker I have in mind comes highly recommended and I’m doing my best to book her.

In the meantime, please remember you are never alone. Your first point of contact is your Intake Coordinator/Supervisor. Make sure you have their contact information. And, you are always welcome to call me. Debriefing is important and can reduce emotional distress if done soon after an incident. Although the supervisors are volunteers, and I am a part-time worker, someone is always available if you need support. To reach me, call the office 250-871-5940.

Office Hours: Monday through Friday 10:00 – 2:00
Website: http://www.seniorpeercounselling.com

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